Rather than defend the details of the many accusations of corruption, struggling 2020 candidate Joe Biden is trying to dismiss attacks on his family by Trump as a “pure sham.”
Politico reports former Vice President Joe Biden said that his “anger” at seeing his son become a 2020 campaign target cannot overshadow his platform.
“I can’t let my anger overcome the desire and the need to have unite, heal this country,” Biden said in a pre-recorded interview that aired Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.” “I’ve got to move beyond me and beyond my family. Because it’s about your family, it’s about everybody else’s family, not mine.”
Biden called President Donald Trump’s attacks on his son, Hunter, and the Ukrainian gas company he served on the board of, Burisma, a “pure sham.” Trump had asked for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate the Bidens over unsubstantiated corruption claims in a July phone call. That phone call became the center of the impeachment proceedings against Trump, which wrapped up in an acquittal of the president last week.
“I’ll be damned — I’ve been hit a lot. But It’s not going to work on me and I’ll be damned if I’m going to walk away and not take this country back,” Biden said on Sunday.
Last week, per TCO, Speaking with Savannah Guthrie, Joe Biden claimed that Hunter Biden was not given the job at Burisma for access to him and the Obama administration but instead “because he’s a very bright guy.”
Do you think it was wrong for [Hunter] to take that position knowing that it was really because that company wanted access to you?
Well that’s not true. You’re saying things you do not know what you’re talking about. No one said that. Who said that?
Don’t you think it’s just one of those things where people say “well that seems kind of sleazy, why would he have that job if not for who his father was?”
Because he’s a very bright guy.
Joe Biden on why his son Hunter — who had no experience in Ukraine or in the energy sector — got an $80,000-per-month board seat with Burisma as father Biden was running US policy in Ukraine:
"Cause he's a very bright guy." pic.twitter.com/2jOFbZQsre
— Aaron Maté (@aaronjmate) February 3, 2020
Peter Schweizer wrote in the NYPost details about how Hunter Biden benefitted from his family connection and pop.
According to Schweizer:
With the election of his father as vice president, Hunter Biden launched businesses fused to his father’s power that led him to lucrative deals with a rogue’s gallery of governments and oligarchs around the world. Sometimes he would hitch a prominent ride with his father aboard Air Force Two to visit a country where he was courting business. Other times, the deals would be done more discreetly. Always they involved foreign entities that appeared to be seeking something from his father.
There was, for example, Hunter’s involvement with an entity called Burnham Financial Group, where his business partner Devon Archer — who’d been at Yale with Hunter — sat on the board of directors. Burnham became the vehicle for a number of murky deals abroad, involving connected oligarchs in Kazakhstan and state-owned businesses in China.
But one of the most troubling Burnham ventures was here in the United States, in which Burnham became the center of a federal investigation involving a $60 million fraud scheme against one of the poorest Indian tribes in America, the Oglala Sioux.
Devon Archer was arrested in New York in May 2016 and charged with “orchestrating a scheme to defraud investors and a Native American tribal entity of tens of millions of dollars.” Other victims of the fraud included several public and union pension plans. Although Hunter Biden was not charged in the case, his fingerprints were all over Burnham. The “legitimacy” that his name and political status as the vice president’s son lent to the plan was brought up repeatedly in the trial.
The scheme was explicitly designed to target pension funds that had “socially responsible investing” clauses, including pension funds of labor union organizations that had publicly supported Joe Biden’s political campaigns in the past. Indeed, eight of the 11 pension funds that lost their money were either government employee or labor union pension funds. Joe Biden has “a long-standing alliance with labor.” He closely identifies with organized labor. “I make no apologies,” he has said. “I am a union man, period.” And many public unions have endorsed him over the years.
Transcripts from Archer’s trial offer a clearer picture of Hunter Biden’s role at Burnham Asset Management, in particular, the fact that the firm relied on his father’s name and political status as a means of both recruiting pension money into the scheme and alleviating investors’ concerns.
Tim Anderson, a lawyer who did legal work on the issuance of the tribal bonds, recounts seeing Hunter while visiting the Burnham office in New York City to meet with Bevan Cooney, who was later convicted in the case.
The political ties that Biden and Archer had were considered key to the Burnham brand. As stated in an August 2014 email, Jason Galanis, who was convicted in the bond scheme, agreed with an unidentified associate who also thought the company had “value beyond capital” because of their political connections.
In the closing arguments at the trial, one of Archer’s defense attorneys, Matthew Schwartz, explained to the jury that it was impossible to talk about the bond scheme without mentioning Hunter Biden’s name. This “was perfectly sensible,” according to Schwartz, “because Hunter Biden was part of the Burnham team.”